Permaban

meaning and definition

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    What is a permaban?

    A permaban, or permanent ban, is the strictest form of prohibition enforced within online communities and multiplayer games, where a user’s account is indefinitely suspended.

    This punishment is typically reserved for the most severe violations of community guidelines or game rules, such as repeated harassment, cheating, or extreme offensive behavior.

    Once issued, a permaban usually means the user cannot access their account ever again, effectively cutting them off from the game or platform.

    Permabans are a tool for community managers and game developers to maintain a healthy, respectful, and enjoyable environment for all users.

    The introduction of the permaban has its roots in early online and gaming communities, where moderators needed a way to prevent persistently disruptive users from causing harm or discomfort to others.


    Permaban FAQs

    What typically warrants a permaban in an online game?

    In online gaming, actions such as cheating, using exploits, engaging in severe harassment, doxxing, and other forms of severe misconduct can result in a permaban. These actions violate the terms of service and can severely affect the gaming experience for other players.

    Can a permaban be appealed?

    Yes, a permaban can sometimes be appealed. Many platforms and games have a process for appealing bans, where the banned user can present their case for why the ban should be lifted.

    However, the success of an appeal often depends on the circumstances of the ban and the evidence of reform or misunderstanding presented by the user.

    Are permabans effective in moderating online communities?

    Permabans are highly effective as a deterrent against the most harmful behaviors in online communities. They serve as the ultimate penalty for breaking the rules and help ensure that users adhere to community standards, thus maintaining a safe and enjoyable environment for all participants.

    Is a permaban always permanent?

    While the intention behind a permaban is for it to be permanent, there are exceptions where a ban is lifted after a long period or due to a successful appeal. This can happen if the banned individual demonstrates a significant change in behavior or if there was a mistake in the application of the ban.

    Sometimes, permabans can be lifted due to a change in management. The incoming admin or moderator may have a different opinion on the ban or bans in general and may choose to give the offending player another chance.

    How does a permaban differ from a temporary ban?

    A temporary ban restricts user access for a limited period—ranging from a few days to several months—after which the user can regain full access. In contrast, a permaban is intended to be irreversible, permanently restricting access to a game or platform unless successfully appealed.

    Myths about permabans

    A permaban is always issued without warning. In reality, most platforms issue warnings or temporary bans before resorting to a permaban unless the violation is exceptionally severe and the evidence against the player is overwhelming.

    Only the user’s current account is affected by a permaban. Platforms often implement measures to prevent the same user from creating new accounts, such as IP bans, blacklists, and so on.

    Permabans are arbitrary and cannot be contested. Most platforms have a structured process for handling bans and appeals, ensuring a degree of fairness in the enforcement of community guidelines.

    Permaban examples

    • A player repeatedly uses racial slurs in an online game despite multiple temporary bans and warnings from the moderators.
    • A user is found to be selling their account, violating the game’s terms of service. (Not all games and platforms have rules against this, but some do.)
    • A player uses third-party software to manipulate game outcomes in a competitive shooter game. Obvious cheating and unfair play can result in a permaban.
    • A community forum member shares another user’s personal information without consent, engaging in doxxing. Doxxing can cause serious harm to other players and is typically considered a bannable offense.

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    About the author

    Andruid is a writer, roleplayer, storyteller, and nerd who tries to live by Bill and Ted wisdom, i.e. "Be excellent to each other."